Planted Tank Enthusiast
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Minneapolis, MN
I finally took the plunge into saltwater last month. There is a special allure to saltwater. I resisted for many years due to the cost, but I figured that I needed to try it once to satiate my curiosity. I set up my reef tank about 1 1/2 weeks ago. It just wrapped up its cycling (thanks to awesome live rock and sand from Tampa Bay Saltwater), and I expect to add my first fish in a few weeks.
Undoubtedly, saltwater is more expensive: the fish, the corals, the invertebrates, the equipment and the live rock. However, I feel, as in the case with freshwater, that you can create a successful set up on a budget. When I got back into freshwater about two years ago after an 8-10 year break, I was overwhelmed by the number of expensive choices in lights, equipment, designer tanks, "it" fish, etc. I think the same is 10 times more true with saltwater, where many forums celebrate and revere very high-cost "builds." It's almost like the equipment is more alluring for some, which is totally fine.
However, in this din of noise over the latest and greatest products, newbies can get the wrong impression that they can't build a successful saltwater tank on a budget or without some of the latest and greatest equipment. miogpsrocks has a good take on how to make saltwater work for your budget. I'm glad I started.